Oct, 2021 - By WMR
Researchers developed “elite’’ antibodies that are capable of beating coronavirus variants using a novel technique that fastens detecting strong antibodies.
Using a novel technique that accelerates the lengthy process of detecting strongest antibodies, a team of scientists at Hiroshima University developed “elite” antibodies known as neutralizing antibodies that have potential to fight coronavirus variants including delta at lowest dose. When a virus enters our body, it generates particular antibodies to hinder those invading pathogens, some of these antibodies are neutralizing type that attack the virus and prevents it from spreading. Such antibodies are known as neutralizing antibodies, also known as “elite” antibodies. These elite antibodies are rare immune molecule that can fight different variants of viruses.
Discovering these life-saving antibodies is a difficult process as they are hard to locate. Scientists have to monitor millions of B cells from the blood sample of a patient to locate elite antibodies in order to enhance them and grow in labs as therapeutic monoclonal antibodies. For this study, the team registered 18 patients that were recovered from COVID-19 and aged 23 to 93 as blood donors. The scientists gathered blood samples from patients after two weeks of the patient tested positive with COVID-19. When analysed, 40% of blood samples of the patients had weak or no activity in neutralizing antibodies to defeat COVID-19.
The study also found that 80% of subjects with severe infection of covid-19 had neutralizing antibodies whereas those with mild COVID-19 infection had 20 to 30% of neutralizing antibodies. Using the new method, the researchers found five elite antibody candidates from 51 cells of two patients. Afterwards, the team engineered versions of these antibodies and discovered that 4 of the antibodies worked against more threatening strains of COVID-19 even at low doses. The team will be developing a technology that speeds up production of monoclonal antibodies at a pandemic pace after getting patent approval for their novel technology.